The news has been filled with reports of listeria outbreaks in the United States in the last few weeks, and as of yesterday, there have been three more confirmed cases of listeria poisoning in Texas.
Unfortunately, this outbreak has led to deathly consequences. As reported previously on Inquisitr, three people have died in Kansas because of listeria poisoning that was traced back to a three-ounce cup of the famous Blue Bell chocolate ice cream.
The reports of listeria poisoning have mostly originated in Oklahoma and Kansas, seemingly evading its home state of Texas. But yesterday’s report shows the three cases of listeria in Texas linked to Blue Bell ice cream as the same strain that caused the death of three in Kansas. Thankfully, no more deaths have been reported.
Following the first report of listeria last month, Blue Bell sent out an immediate recall for their tainted ice creams, and their plant in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, the apparent originating source of the listeria strain, has been temporarily closed.
Even with their shutting down the plant and removing the ice cream from shelves, some cases have slipped through from previous purchases. The confirmed cases of listeria were from products that had been recalled after the consumers had purchased them. They had not heard the reports on the news and weren’t aware of the risks associated with what they were ingesting.
Listeriosis, commonly called listeria, is a type of serious food poisoning that affects humans and warm-blooded animals. But it’s more than a little diarrhea and vomiting. It can be deadly.
It is linked to the development of gastroenteritis and meningitis, and it’s particularly dangerous for those who are pregnant, since 22 percent of listeria infections in pregnant women cause a stillbirth for the fetus, according to the CDC.
Those with previously debilitating health conditions are also particularly susceptible to its deadly effects. Though anyone can contract the bacterial infection, those who have been weakened by cancer, cancer treatments, or other serious health conditions are at a much higher risk for hospitalization and even death.
Blue Bell ice cream isn’t the only source of listeria in the last few years, either. Sabra hummus, Bidart Bros caramel apples, and Colorado-based cantaloupes were also recalled, with 30 people killed as a result of the tainted fruit, according to the Washington Post.
Blue Bell specifically has issued three product recalls to date, and have recalled more than 25 products just since March, according to USA Today.
They are currently working with the CDC and the FDA to find the cause and solution for the outbreak. Consumers are advised to practice caution with these products in the near future.
[Image via The Dallas Morning News]